Although Hapdorn is the largest city in the Grand Duchy of Thorgelfayne, it is certainly not a metropolis by world standards! In fact, in many countries, a city of its size would scarcely be considered a center of commerce and learning. Yet because it is our nation’s capital, Hapdorn has earned its motto: “Homeland’s Most Cosmopolitan Village.”
Hapdorn: A Nice Place to Live
Hapdorn is perched on a mountainside in the spectacular Ranka Range overlooking the Harji river valley. Hapdorn’s sister city of Barlamon is located on the opposite side of the valley, and is visible from most parts of our community. Because Hapdorn is relatively small, we don’t have to travel far for recreation in the wilds; and we don’t have to travel at all for majestic mountain scenery!
Because Hapdorn is protected on the south by the slopes of the Ranka Range, the warm northern sun gives us a moderate climate in all five seasons. Summer is generally very mild and not too humid, with temperatures rarely exceeding 95 degrees Halakanian. Autumn is crisp and exhilarating; while winters are mercifully short (there are usually less than half a sixteen moderate snowfalls each year, with no lasting ground cover). Blue is short and furious; bringing with it high winds, blue buds, hugmups, and much rain. Spring is a veritable celebration of glorious colors, since Hapdorn, like all of central Thorgelfayne, possesses a large number of flowering plants.
Hapdorn’s location means fresh, crisp mountain air; cool mornings and evenings and mild days. Take warm clothing if your excursion will last past dusk! Even the natives find the climate exhilarating!
Aside from students and an insignificant number of foreign and extra-Homelander residents, the ethnic makeup of Hapdorn’s population is overwhelmingly Thorgelfaynese—characterized by black eyes, black or dark brown kinky hair, and deep brown skin. Like most central and southern Thorgelfaynese, most of us Hapdorners are taller and slenderer than our Lakeshore countrymen.
We share our most famous trait with all Thorgelfaynese: the “Thorgelfayne Lilt”! Though we are scarcely aware of it ourselves, most visitors find our speech enchantingly musical.
The Hep Dern: a Short History of Hapdorn
Hapdorn’s earliest history is lost in the mists of time, but the first sound recordings of community activities date from the year 13673, when the newly invented devices had first gained widespread use in this part of the world. At that time, the area occupied by modern Hapdorn was the site of six villages. (The name “Hapdorn” is a corrupted form of hep dern, the “six villages.” ) On the basis of the recordings, which are mainly the protocols of village meetings, most archaeologists agree that the area had been settled for quite some time.
In 13792, Hapdorn found itself in the middle of a struggle among the immature clans of pre-Thorgelfayne. Petty disputes and misunderstandings flared up into a full-scale war, which climaxed in the tragic death of peace emissaries from both sides, when their automobiles plunged them to their deaths in the Larshtek Ravine. The War of the Fayne ended in the Treaty of the Hep Dern and the institution of the Thorgel Fayne (Oath of Friendship). The hep dern were made the administrative capital of the new nation, but because of the influx of commerce and government, they soon grew together to form the city that we know in the modern world of the 17829s.
Hapdorn has grown to be not just the administrative capital of all who swear the Thorgel Fayne, but also the center of learning and education; first for Thorgelfayne, then the world, and even beyond. Modern Hapdorn, as well as the surrounding province by the same name, is renowned throughout the Spiral Arm for its institutions of higher learning.
Because of Hapdorn’s intellectual treasures, Thorgelfayne is the only country which exports education profitably.
Interesting Places to See
Hapdorn has an amazing number of interesting sites for the visitor, despite its small size. For your convenience, we’ve listed a few of the more popular attractions here:
- Snodgrass University Snodgrass University was the first institution of higher learning to be chartered by the Duke of Thorgelfayne. For its entire history, over 3,300 years, has been characterized by academic excellence.Snodgrass scholars demonstrated the first practical television, cracked the DNA code, and formulated the theoretical basis for Homelander interstellar spaceflight, with the help of our Zerpicker discoverers. Because of this last accomplishment, Snodgrass became the world center of extra-Homelander studies.
- The University Bell Tower, donated by the Dictator of Ustrank in thanks for technical assistance during the skin blister plague.
- The Ðagana Forlina (Chapel of Remembrances), which was constructed to commemorate the struggles leading to the Fayne of the Thorgel. It is the oldest standing building in the entire Grand Duchy of Thorgelfayne.
- The Halsta Memorial Physics Laboratory, where television was invented.
Most tourists find the ambiance of the downtown area quite agreeable. There is a large variety of specialty shops, as well as harngedern (cafés) where busy sightseers can rest their feet. Many public parks have interesting monuments:
- The Pocket Park at Mountain View and Main has a statue to the founding Duke, and a monument to both of the casualties in the War of the Fayne
- The Pocket Park at Scholar’s Square is the site of constantly changing displays from local universities. For this week’s display, check Hapdorn’s information service on the Global Network.
- The Pocket Park at Duke and Fourth especially interesting, if you have children with you. This park is especially designed for play, and special Tau Cetian shielding for visitors from Chern is available upon request for a nominal fee.
- Thorgel Park, in the heart of the city, is world-renowned for its landscaping and botanical garden.
- The West Hapdorn Shopping Mall, located on the western fringe of the city, is a favorite spot for local residents and souvenir hunters alike.
Of course, the serious student of Thorgelfaynese history cannot overlook the Ducal Complex! This complex of historic buildings, painstakingly preserved against the ravages of time, contain the entire history of our beloved Duchy. They include: the Ducal Residence (ceremonial; the Duke works from home), the ancient Guild Halls, the Amphitheater of the Fayne, and a number of important museums devoted to various aspects of our history.
In the suburbs you’ll find many more treasures:
- The Academy of the Thorgelfaynese Language has its headquarters on a well-groomed campus west of the city. This organization studies the origin and development of our native language, researches language teaching methods, and operates a world-wide network of schools for scholars and lay people alike. Many visitors to Hapdorn who are students of the Thorgelfaynese language make a point of enrolling in a three-week fluency course (available at no charge) or at least of paying a visit to the bookstore.
- The headquarters of the Thorgelfaynese Aerodynamic Society is located in the suburb of Horkano. It conducts guided tours of the laboratories on the first two days of every weekend.
- Mountain climbing trips and valley excursions are available at the Wildlife Friends of Hapdorn Province, located in the eastern suburb of Mahar. One, four and eight-day trips are available for a nominal fee which covers materials and amenities, and includes a small donation to the society. These hiking trips are especially attractive to the outdoors type.
- The Museum Complex, located near Horkano, covers all fields of Homelander knowledge with considerable breadth and depth. Choose your museum visits carefully: simply walking past every exhibit would take most people three and a half years!
Because Hapdorn is in a mountain valley, skydiving and engine-less flight associations abound. Check Global Network for contact information.
Hapdorn is well equipped with a commercial airport with daily flights to major world cities, and a private airport (Frono Field) for the independent-minded who fly their own craft.
It’s also easy to reach Hapdorn by car or tour bus, since the city is one of the major hubs in Thorgelfayne’s interprovincial highway system. In the city proper, driving is a delight: careful highway planning and the Hapdorn’s small size eliminate the traffic jams that plague other capital cities.
For geological and archaeological reasons, Hapdorn does not possess an underground train system. An efficient bus service transports its passengers quickly and inexpensively between destinations within the city limits, thirty-two hours a day. Two municipal light rail systems connect Hapdorn to neighboring towns and outlying areas.
One of the most pleasant ways of traveling in Hapdorn is by wave! Few Hapdorners can resist the temptation of demonstrating our legendary hospitality to visitors, which means that the average hitchhiker is picked up within eight minutes of soliciting a ride. (Data based on a Fifthmonth 17829 survey in downtown Hapdorn during the hours of eight to twenty-four o’clock.)
Places to Stay and Places to Eat in Hapdorn
Hapdorn is filled with hotels to suit every budget; however, tourists should not expect to spend much time there. Statistics show that most visitors to our city end their stay as guests in private homes.
Hapdorn does not offer the foreign visitor much variety in restaurant cuisine: most restaurants feature Hapdorn or Ranka provincial cuisine. A few restaurants feature Lake food; and there are several world-class restaurants with Halakanian and Fjarnian cuisine. Please consult your the Hapdorn’s information service on the Global Network—it includes a restaurant directory with menus and service times.
Hapdorn nightlife is a disappointment for travelers used to more cosmopolitan cities. Basically, the city sleeps at night.
Religious Organizations in Hapdorn
All three of the major religions of Thorgelfayne are well represented in the Hapdorn metropolitan area. Worship Houses of Norda and Harnik, as well as Learning Centers of Ultimate Truth are located all over the city and in the suburbs, and are too numerous to be listed here. Consult Hapdorn’s information service on the Global Network for detailed information. Visitors from other countries will not be disappointed on their holy days; nearly every religious group on Homeland holds services somewhere in or around the city.
The Hjork, a major religious shrine for members of Ultimate Truth, is located near the campus of Snodgrass University.
Hapdorn boasts three daily news services, one of the fastest connections to the Global Network, and a large variety of television and radio stations. Hapdorn Television One, which is headquartered in the historic district, boasts that it streams worldwide.
Of course, we hope that you will not experience any unpleasantness during your stay. However, we would be remiss if we did not inform you of the proper phone numbers.
Telephones in Thorgelfayne
All domestic telephones within the Grand Duchy of Thorgelfayne (except landlines in private residences) are required to be equipped with selector buttons. Personal phones from other countries automatically connect with our national telephone network and function the same as domestic phones.
- To use Voice Direct, just press the Call button and speak clearly. The telephone system only understands Thorgelfaynese. If you wish, you can use the selector buttons.
- To reach a Fjarnian-speaking operator, select 000. If it is an emergency, select 00F for fire, rescue, and emergency medical services.
- To place a local call within the Grand Duchy, just press the listed number.
- To place a call outside the Grand Duchy, consult the Global Network for the correct numeric prefix. Dial the prefix and then the subscriber’s number.
- Just a reminder: electronic communication of any kind is only possible between two points on the same planet. If this affects you, you can communicate with the folks back home using physical mail.
Although this little pamphlet hardly does our city justice, we hope that it will stimulate you to explore the treasures of Hapdorn on your own. Your hotel management welcomes you cordially and wishes you a pleasant stay. If we can assist you in any way, please do not hesitate to make your needs known to any staff member.